Originally published on Advocate.com February 07 2004 12:00 AM ET
Canada's Quebec Medical Association this week adopted a policy that requires all HIV-positive doctors in the province to inform their employers of their serostatus, the Canadian Press reports. The new policy was adopted after Sainte-Justine Children's Hospital in Montreal disclosed two weeks ago that an HIV-positive doctor operated on more than 2,600 patients at the hospital. Although the doctor's supervisor said he was aware of the surgeon's serostatus, hospital administrators say they were unaware that she was HIV-positive.
The hospital has performed HIV antibody tests on more than 1,500 of the patients on which the surgeon operated between 1990 and 2003, and none have been infected with the virus. The new association policy requires all HIV-positive doctors to inform their immediate supervisors of their serostatus and to meet with a committee of experts to develop an internal policy for that particular medical office or hospital. The policy also requires that HIV-positive doctors be regularly tracked, including anytime a health facility makes a major technological upgrade. The Quebec Medical Association has more than 7,000 members.